Riverside County health officials say the number of confirmed coronavirus cases rose by 1,049 since the end of last week, with a dozen more deaths attributed to complications stemming from the virus, but hospitalizations and active cases are continuing to fall.

The aggregate number of COVID-19 infections recorded since the public health documentation period began in early March is 52,909, compared to 51,860 on Friday, according to the Riverside University Health System, which did not release data over the weekend.

RUHS officials said the total number of deaths tied to COVID-19 stands at 1,019, up from 1,007 three days ago.

The number of known active cases countywide is 8,503, a decline of 1,137 since last week. The active count is derived by subtracting deaths and recoveries from the current total — 52,909 — according to the county Executive Office. The number of verified patient recoveries is 43,387. A recovery is defined as someone who has not manifested symptoms for 14 days.

Officials said 210 people are hospitalized for treatment of COVID-19, down 13 from Friday, with 73 patients in intensive care units, a drop of nine in that time.

Emergency Management Department Director Bruce Barton told the Board of Supervisors last week that hospitals countywide are being polled daily to accurately gauge data, which he termed “very solid.”

“We are at the lowest point since early June for (COVID-19) hospitalizations,” Barton said.

The positive momentum is providing impetus for ratcheting down public health regulations that have forced businesses to close, some permanently, throughout the county.

On Friday, Gov. Gavin Newsom unveiled a four-tier, color-coded system that will be used daily to guide counties’ in loosening regulations on the private sector. Additional information about the “Blueprint for a Safer Economy” is available online at www.COVID19.ca.gov. Metrics statewide, an interactive map and list of business sectors that are open in each county are available on the website.

According to Department of Public Health Director Kim Saruwatari, nearly two-thirds of all deaths coded as COVID-19 have been correlated to underlying conditions, principally chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, hypertension, diabetes and kidney disease.

The doubling time — or the number of days in which documented virus cases increase 100% — is 45 days in Riverside County. A doubling rate of seven days is reason for alarm, while expanding doubling times point to moderation, or gradual success in virus containment, according to health officials.

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